Summer is well on its way, and our kids are most likely the most excited. It means fun under the sun—playing in the pool, biking around the neighborhood, and spending time at home without worrying about school.
But along with freedom and fun also comes increased risk for danger and illness. While summer should be a fun time for your kids, it should not come at the expense of their safety and health. Here are some tips to keep protect your kids during the warmer months.
Be watchful whenever they’re swimming
It doesn’t matter whether you have your own pool in your yard or if you’re going to the beach or a community pool—drowning can take only seconds. When taking your kids swimming, psyche yourself into being an active watcher as they splash around in the pool, even if your kids know how to swim. Invest in tools that can help keep your kids safe, like water wings and floaties. Remember, though, that while these devices can help keep them afloat, they won’t necessarily prevent your kids from drowning, so watching them closely is still your number one safety tool.
Constantly check for signs of heat exhaustion
Here are some signs and symptoms you need to watch out for:
- Increased body temperature, usually less than 104˚ Fahrenheit
- Vomiting and/or nausea
- Clammy and cool skin despite the heat
- Muscle cramps
- Weakness, dizziness, or fainting
- Increased thirst
- Increased sweating
If your kid exhibits any of these symptoms, here are some quick remedies:
- Immediately bring them to a shaded and cooler place.
- Get them to drink cool fluids that have salt content, like sports drinks.
- Gently apply a cold sponge or a cold, wet towel to their skin.
- If your kid starts to complain of painful muscle cramps in any part of their body, help them stretch gently and massage the parts that hurt.
Make sure your kids are always hydrated when playing outside. Seek medical attention if they’re unable to drink or seem to be losing alertness.
Prepare your home
Another key part of keeping your kids safe in the summer is by preparing your home. Prioritize home projects that can help you monitor them more or keep strangers from coming into the house. Some examples include security cameras around the house, big windows that can help you see the yard from inside your home, and a big, durable gate similar to a commercial aluminum fence.
Protect their skin from harmful UV rays and mosquitoes
If you and your kid are going outdoors, make sure to apply sunscreen with an SPF of 30 or higher. Don’t forget to reapply every three hours or more frequently if your child will be swimming or sweating. Consider delaying some outdoor activities when the sun is at its peak, usually from 10 in the morning to 4 in the afternoon. Consider investing in clothing that can protect them from the sun, too.
Another product you need to invest in is insect repellents. Make sure to choose ones that are
Prioritize car safety
Here are some things to remember when going on a long road trip this summer:
- Make sure all the kids are buckled up, no matter how short the ride.
- Triple check your young kids’ booster seats to ensure it’s properly installed.
- Don’t leave your kids alone in the car, no matter how convenient it is. Kids have more risk for developing heat-related illnesses than adults.
Maintain bike safety
Anytime your child gets on a bike, a skateboard, a scooter, or roller skates, make sure they are always protected by a helmet and some knee and elbow pads. You can decorate these pieces of equipment to make it more fun for them and match your child’s personality.
Practice internet safety
If your kids have social media accounts that they use for school, amp up your home’s internet safety and security by looking into tools that can help you protect them from predators and online criminals.
- Keep them away from the cooking station during family picnics and barbecues.
- Watch fireworks safely by never letting them touch or light fireworks. Consider banning fireworks altogether and enjoy those done by your neighbors.
- Ensure they’re wearing their life jackets properly when riding boats.
With the right safety precautions and health measures, there’s no reason why your kids can’t have a fun summer. Just keep watch over anything that might cause accidents or heat-related illnesses and teach them to be careful, and your kids are bound to have the fun and rest they deserve after a stressful academic year.